We love to go birding! Central New Mexico Audubon offers weekend and weekday trips to members and nonmembers alike. All field trips are FREE and anyone is welcome! In addition, we have birding opportunities from other organizations posted here!
You can also view a calendar of trips by visiting our “Calendar” page.
Click on a tab to view trip details and schedule
Thursday Birders meet almost every Thursday in Albuquerque. You don’t need to let the leader know you will be attending – just show up at the meeting spot no later than the specified time. If you have any questions email or call the trip leader for that particular day.
Walk in Calabacillas Arroyo with Maurice Mackey: 505-897-0415, firstname.lastname@example.org. The group will meet at 8:00 a.m. in the parking lot that is located on the west side of the Rio Grande River. The area is reached by driving north on Coors, past Paseo Del Norte and Irving Boulevard, turning east on Westside Drive. Westside Drive is the first right 0.28 miles north of Irving Boulevard. Follow Westside Drive about 0.2 of a mile to an open gate on the left. Go through the gate and down the arroyo to the parking area. If driving south on Coors from Corrales or Alameda, get in the left turn lane and turn onto Westside Drive. The walk will end before noon.
Hike in Otero Canyon with Gale Owings: 505-255-8333. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the parking lot of the Sandia Ranger Station on NM 337 in Tijeras. The group will carpool from there to the Otero Canyon parking lot, 3.3 miles south on NM 337. The 1.5-mile walk is over an uneven trail. The walk will end before noon.
Ojito de San Antonio Open Space
Visit Ojito de San Antonio Open Space in Cedar Crest with Leah Henzler: 505-280-2085, email@example.com. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center located on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. Parking for the Open Space is just west of the San Antonio de Padua Church. Take the Tijeras/Cedar Crest Exit from I-40, drive north toward Cedar Crest on NM 14 one mile, and make a left turn onto San Antonio Drive just before the church. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $1 at five cents per mile. Lunch is planned at the Greenside Cafe in Cedar Crest.
Visit the Feltz family’s Jemez Mountain cabin at 8,600′ near La Cueva with Lou Feltz: 505-856-1322, firstname.lastname@example.org. One may view birds from the back deck or nearby meadows. Meet at 6:50 a.m. for a 7:00 departure from the Far North Shopping Center located on the east side of San Mateo and the north side of Academy Boulevard. Meet in the center of the large parking lot. Bring lunch. The trip will end in the early afternoon. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $7 at five cents per mile.
Oak Flat Picnic Area
Walk in the Oak Flat picnic area in the Manzano Mountains with Glenda and Jim Morling: 269-420-8322, email@example.com. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. To reach the Open Space, exit I-40 at Tijeras and take NM 337 south. Drive south 8.5 miles. Turn left on Oak Flat Road and drive 0.9 miles. Turn left at the Group Use Picnic Area sign and then make another left to the parking lot at the end of the road. The walk will end before noon. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $1.25 at five cents per mile. The walk will end before noon.
Villanueva State Park
Travel to Villaneuva State Park on the Pecos River with Becky Purvis: 505-877-2517, firstname.lastname@example.org. Meet at 6:50 a.m. for a 7:00 departure from the far west end of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center located on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. The park is located 65 miles east on I-40, then 20 miles north on NM 3. The group will stop in the town of Villaneuva to view birds on the Pecos River and then drive to the nearby state park. A $5 entrance fee or State Park Pass is required per car. Bring lunch. The trip should end in the mid-afternoon. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $8 at five cents per mile.
Balsam Glade and Capulin Springs
Visit Balsam Glade and Capulin Springs in the Sandia Mountains with Lefty Arnold: 505-514-9398, email@example.com. Meet at 7:47 a.m. for a 7:57 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. Balsam Glade is located on the right side of NM 536 past the Sandia Peak Ski Area. A $3 parking fee or Federal Pass is required per car. The shared gas expense is $2 at five cents per mile. Lunch is planned at the Greenside Café in Cedar Crest.
Alameda Open Space
Walk in the Alameda Open Space in the North Valley with Leah Henzler: 505-280-2085, firstname.lastname@example.org. Meet at 8:00 a.m. in the Open Space parking lot on the south side of Alameda Boulevard, just east of the Rio Grande River. The one-mile walk will end before noon.
Valles Caldera National Preserve
Join Judy Liddell: email@example.com, 505-220-7998 and Barbara Hussey: firstname.lastname@example.org, 505-385-1165, to explore the Valles Caldera National Preserve, including the backcountry. The group will explore birds in a variety of habitats within the caldera. The trip will be limited to 18 people and preference will be given to individuals who have not gone on this field trip in previous Thursday Birder outings. Since there is limited parking at birding spots along the way, participants must be willing to ride in the vehicle of one of the five designated drivers who will have backcountry permits. This will be an all day trip. To reserve a spot and get a full itinerary, contact Judy, email@example.com, 505-220-7998.
Doc Long Picnic Area
Walk in the Doc Long Picnic Area of the Sandia Mountains with Linda Otterson: 505-280-3123, firstname.lastname@example.org. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center located on the south side of Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. The walk will be on an asphalt trail, about a mile long, and will end before noon. A $3 fee or Federal Pass is required per car. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $1.50 at five cents per mile.
Simms Ranch and Bonnie Long’s Potluck
Visit the Simms Ranch and Bonnie Long’s house in the Manzano Mountains for hummingbirds, bluebirds, and a potluck meal with Bonnie Long: 505-379-1985, email@example.com. Meet at 8:50 a.m. for a 9:00 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard or 9:50 at the entrance to the Simms Ranch on NM 337, six miles south of Chilili, past mile marker 5, where Bonnie will meet people near her parked vehicle. Since this event has grown in size to over 35 people, at least six people are asked to bring a main dish such as lasagna, enchiladas, macaroni and cheese, meat or vegetable casserole, baked beans or sliced meat. Please contact Bonnie if you can provide one of these main dishes. Other attendees should bring beverages and side dishes that would serve 8 – 10 people. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $3.50 at five cents per mile.
Walk in the Corrales bosque and view the Mississippi Kites in Corrales with Joe Schelling: 505-797-9018, firstname.lastname@example.org. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the shopping area on the north side of Alameda Road/NM 528 and east side of NM 448/Corrales Road. Park near the Boxing Bear Brewing Company where parking is not restricted. The group will carpool from there. All are invited to have lunch afterwards at Village Pizza in Corrales.
Hike along the Ellis Trail Head in the Sandia Mountains with Lannois Neely: 505-890-7881, email@example.com. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the far west side of the Four Hills Village Shopping Center located on Central Avenue between Juan Tabo and Tramway Boulevard. Ellis Trail Head is the last parking lot on Highway 536 before reaching the Crest. A $3 parking fee or Federal pass is required per vehicle. For those not driving the shared gas expense is $3.00 at five cents per mile. The walk should end before noon.
Las Huertas Canyon
Drive to Las Huertas Canyon on the north side of the Sandia Mountains with Bernie and Pauline Morris: 505-369-1227, firstname.lastname@example.org. Take I-25 north out of Albuquerque and take exit 242 to Placitas. Drive east on NM 165 for 2.8 miles. The group will meet at 7:00 a.m. in the US Forest Service parking area at the west entrance to Forest Loop Road on the south side of NM 165. The group will bird there for a while looking for desert scrub birds. Since the road up the mountain is deeply rutted, people with high clearance vehicles will be asked to drive the group further east on NM 165 through Placitas for nine miles on paved road, and then for four miles on unpaved, rough road until reaching the lower parking lot of the Los Huertas Picnic Area. Bring a picnic lunch. A $3 parking fee or Federal Pass is required per car. For those not driving the shared gas expense is $1.50 at five cents per mile. The drivers should have their riders back to the Forest Service parking lot by 1:00 p.m.
Drive to see raptors on the eastern plains of Torrance County with Bonnie Long: 505-379-1985, email@example.com. Meet at 7:50 a.m. for an 8:00 departure from the Tijeras Senior Center parking area on NM 333/ Rt. 66. To reach the parking area, turn north on Tijeras Avenue, just west of the Tijeras Library. A secondary meeting place is the Pilot Travel Center located on north NM 41 after taking the second Moriarty exit from I-40. Meet there at 8:30 a.m. The group will drive south of Moriarty to look for raptors. Lunch will be at the Old Mill in Estancia. The group should be back in Tijeras in the late afternoon. For those not driving the shared gas expense is $5 at five cents per mile.
La Ventana Natural Arch and The Narrows
Visit La Ventana Natural Arch and The Narrows southeast of Grants, NM, with Rebecca Gracey: 505-362-5095, firstname.lastname@example.org. TO ARRANGE CAR POOLING, meet at 7:20 a.m. for a 7:30 departure from the northwest corner of the parking lot of the Hotel Albuquerque, located at 800 Rio Grande NW. From I-40, take the Rio Grande exit, and drive south to the first stop light at Bellamah NW. Turn east toward the hotel and enter the parking lot on the right. TO REACH THE TRIP DESTINATION, drive west on I-40 toward Grants and take exit 89 toward NM 117. There is a gas station/convenience store there where participants will gather. From there the group will drive about 17 miles south on 117 to La Ventana. After birding there the group will drive 3.8 miles to The Narrows for birding and lunch. Bring your own lunch. The distance is 90 miles, 180 miles round trip. For those not driving, the shared gas expense is $9 at five cents per mile. The trip should end in the late afternoon.
If you have any questions about the Thursday Birders trips contact Rebecca Gracey.
CNMAS Field Trips
CNMAS Trips occur irregularly throughout the year on weekends. Notice that some trips are overnight events. Be sure and contact leaders before you attend! Please make sure to contact your leader prior to the trip as plans may change, leaders appreciate it and some trips are limited to a set number of participants. CNMAS and its leaders encourage car-pooling, especially on longer trips.
Saturday, June 23, 2018
Birding by Boat – Sunrise Float
5:30 – 10:00 a.m.
Join Kim Score for a sunrise river trip to take advantage of the morning bird chorus and practice your birding-by-ear and bird language skills. We will be on the water for 3.5 hours, ear birding and eBirding our way through the scenic Corrales bosque. We will be canoeing and kayaking an 8.5-mile stretch of the Middle Rio Grande from the North Corrales bosque to the Alameda bridge. On last summer’s trip we found over 50 species of birds!
Kim is contracting with Quiet Waters Paddling Adventures, which will provide passenger shuttling, canoes, kayaks, life vests, and safety and training. Cost per person is $40 to $45, depending on your boat rental. If you bring your own watercraft there is a $10 discount. For more info visit https://www.quietwaterspaddling.com/.
We will meet at 5:30 a.m. at the Quiet Waters office, 105 D Pleasant View Drive, Bernalillo, to begin training and loading up, then be shuttled to the starting location for a 6:30 put-in on the water.
Please RSVP by June 12 to Kim at email@example.com or contact her with questions. Maximum group limit is 15. Once you have RSVP’d, Kim will send you a link to pay and register online with Quiet Waters.
Saturday, July 21, 2018
Red Canyon – Manzano Mountains
7:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Meet at 7:00 a.m. at the Four Hills Shopping Center by Einstein Bros. Please arrive a bit early if you’d like to carpool. And bring your lunch.
We will drive a little over an hour to visit Manzano Pond and then continue to Red Canyon where we will start the hike. This area did not burn in the recent years’ fires and still has intact forest (fingers crossed! We will come up with a different location should this change between now and then.) We will look for montane species including Cordilleran Flycatcher, all three nuthatches and Western Tanager. It is a relatively unexplored area and who knows what else we may find!
The hike will last two and a half to three hours. It is classified as moderate, so please bring appropriate footwear. The trail is well marked but can be narrow in spots with some steeper climbs.
This trip will be limited to 10 participants. Please RSVP to Christopher Rustay at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, August 25, 2018
Rio Chama from Abiquiu Lake to Christ in the Desert Monastery
8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Pack your lunch and meet at 8:00 a.m. at the parking lot on the south side of the Abiquiu Lake visitor center on NM-96.
Join Judy Liddell to explore the riparian habitat below Abiquiu Dam that often hosts a plethora of migrating species in late August, then head to the area along Forest Road 151 along the Rio Chama, which serves as a migration corridor in late summer. Potential species include Sage Thrasher, Pinyon Jay, Clark’s Nutcracker, Townsend’s Solitare and sparrows and warblers.
Please RSVP by August 23 to Judy by phone, 505-220-7998, or e-mail email@example.com.
If you have any comments, concerns, suggestions, or praise for the CNMAS Field Trips contact the Field Trip Director.
Other Birding Opportunities
But that’s not all, we want to share the love! There are many other groups that organize trips in the New Mexico. Here we have provided a list of field outings sponsored by other organizations.
Rio Grande Nature Center Weekend Bird Walks
Every Saturday & Sunday – 8:30 am
w/ Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park
The FRGNC offers birding trips every Saturday and Sunday throughout the year starting at 8:30 am. Walks are FREE and open to anyone. They start at the Candelaria Wetlands Blind in the Northeast corner of the parking lot at the Rio Grande Nature Center and last from 1 to 3 hours touring the grounds at the Nature Center. Note that there is a parking fee of $3 unless you have a New Mexico State Parks Pass or Friends of the Rio Grande Nature Center pass.
For more information about the Rio Grande Nature Center, visit the friends webpage by clicking here.
Valle de Oro NWR Bird Walks
Every third Saturday of the month
w/ Friends of Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge
Every third Saturday of the month Valle de Oro NWR offers two guided bird walks: one for the beginning enthusiast and one for the more advanced birder. The walks are structured depending on participant turn-out and time of year. Since birds and other wildlife are most active early in the morning, the goal is to start within one hour of sunrise. Start times vary; details are on the Events page of the Friends of Valle de Oro website: http://friendsofvalledeoro.wildapricot.org/.
Sangre De Cristo Audubon Society Field Trips
Sangre De Cristo Audubon (based in Santa Fe, NM) has regular field trips throughout the year.
Mention Central New Mexico Audubon Society when you sign up for a 2017 trip to Asa Wright Nature Center in Trinidad for a $100 donation from Caligo Ventures.